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Box Office Wizard (7.29.11)

Welcome to Box Office Wizard, Player Affinity’s Movie Box Office Prediction Contest. Just read through this post and tell us your top five box office predicted finishers for this weekend. Finish out 2011 on top and you will win something COOL.

This is Week 27. 

Contest Rules: To qualify, entries must be submitted in the Comments Section. For every movie you correctly place in the box office top five (say you pick “Resident Evil: Afterthought 3D” to rank first in the box office that weekend and it comes in first), you earn one point. The movie selection must be in its correct rank to earn a point. Points are cumulative. We will keep track of your correct percentage.  WANT FIVE BONUS POINTS???  Leave your official wizard name in the Comment Section with your entry. Be creative. Example names are in our Wizarding Leaderboard.

How scoring works: So, let’s say you’ve played for four weeks and missed only four movies. You then have 16 Cumulative Points out of 20 and a prediction percentage of 75%. Not too shabby. Someone else could have 64 CP out of 110 and be ahead of you in CP, but behind you (58%) in percentage. You must, however, have played 8 weeks to be eligible for the Percentage crown. When the year is up, whoever has the most cumulative points and whoever has the highest percentage (could be the same person) wins the title of Box Office Wizard 2011.

Official Scoring/The Fine Print:

-Only submissions in the comments section qualify. 
-Predictions must be in by Noon (in the time zone you’re in) the Saturday after the weekly post goes up and Noon Friday on Holiday weekends. 
-Only the Weekend Actuals (released Monday afternoons) count as the official totals, not the estimates that most news sources publish Sunday afternoons. 

-For holiday weekends that start early or end late, only the three-day Friday through Sunday totals count.
-Look for Dinah Galley’s box office recap on Mondays for the weekend’s results (not always the actuals, so look closely).


Top Five From Last Weekend

1. Captain America: The First Avenger - $65 M ... $65 M 
2. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 - $47.4 M ... $273.5 M 
3. Friends with Benefits - $18.6 M ... $18.6 M 
4. Transformers: Dark of the Moon - $12 M ... $325.8 M 
5. Horrible Bosses - $11.8 M ... $82.5 M

Week #26 Wizard(s): Kieran, Herpious - 3 pts
Current Cumulative Box Office Wizard(s): Cinemus the Predictor (me) - 81 pts
Current Percentage Box Office Wizard(s):  Simonious Saysian - 61%

Well, no one predicted the massive fall of "Potter," but Herpious saw an opportunity to gain ground on me seeing as I predicted a film to jump another film that yet again did not ... props to Kieran for moving up to third by the same means, though Simonious still leads the percentage race.


Cinemus the Predictor - 81 (76/130 - 58%)
Herpious Derpious - 80 (75/130 - 57%)
Kieran - 70 (70/130 - 54%)
Simonius Saysian - 69 (64/105 - 61%)
Lord Jamven Serpenthelm - 20 (15/35 - 43%)
MacGumblebug the Third - 9 (4/10) - 40%)
Julian - 7 (7/15 - 48%)
Max A - 5 (5/10 - 50%)


2010 Box Office Wizard: SimonSays - 97 pts in 34 weeks
2010 Box Office Wizard: Steven C - 97 pts in 34 weeks

New Contenders this Weekend

Cowboys & Aliens
Directed by Jon Favreau
Written by Roberto Orci, Alex Kurtzman, Damon Lindelof, Hawk Ostby, Mark Fergus, Steve Oedekerk, Scott Mitchell Rosenberg (comic)
Starring: Daniel Craig, Harrison Ford, Olivia Wilde, Sam Rockwell
Genre: Action/Adventure/Sci Fi

Distributor: Universal
Release: 3,750 theaters 

The Smurfs
Directed by Raja Gosnell
Written by J. David Stern and David N. Weiss, Peyo (characters)
Starring: Neil Patrick Harris, Jayma Mays, Hank Azaria
Genre: Family/Comedy

Distributor: Sony/Columbia
Release: 3,395 theaters  

Crazy, Stupid, Love
Directed by Glen Ficarra, John Requa
Written by Dan Fogelman
Starring: Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling, Julianne Moore, Emma Stone
Genre: Romance/Drama/Comedy
Distributor: Warner Bros.
Release: 3,020 theaters 


My Box Office Predictions

This is an unusually tough week for predictions. With big-ticket returning films and nothing completely massive entering theaters, a lot of films project to finish between $20-40 million which is very uncertain territory meaning all the spots in the top five are up for grabs.

In a close race, I have favored Cowboys & Aliens over a second winning weekend from Captain America: The First Avenger. This summer has heavily favored box-office turnover. Look at last week; few could’ve predicted “Harry Potter” would drop 70 percent after its mammoth opening. Jon Favreau’s foray outside of the “Iron Man” world has Daniel Craig testing his action-star status outside of “Bond” and tries to get something extra out of Harrison Ford’s tank. Alien premises and Westerns separately are tricky, so predicting the response is not easy. I suspect around $35 million with star power and Favreau’s name the only chance for a number close to $40 million. It will take away a bit of a returning audience from the “Captain,” so I’ve got a typical second-week drop in mind putting the Star-Spangled Man in at $30-35 million.

CGI/live-action hybrids have been polarizing. On one hand you have Alvin and the Chipmunks and on the other you have Yogi Bear which failed last December. I think The Smurfs should land in the middle, between $20-30 million with enough to edge Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2. I’m expecting about $23 million tops for “Potter,” so the little blue people should slide in just above it.

In fifth I have Crazy, Stupid, Love. Carell has a lot of box-office pull, which should help it reach $20 million, but rom-coms that lead towards romance and not comedy as the marketing has indicated for this one tend to do worse and a lot of adult entertainment remains left over from previous weeks.

1. Cowboys & Aliens
2. Captain America: The First Avenger
3. The Smurfs
4. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2
5. Crazy, Stupid, Love



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